Three-Time Great Race Champion Irene Jason Passes Away

March 19, 2021

Irene Jason, a three-time Great Race champion driver, passed away today. The Keller, Texas, school teacher and her husband, Barry won the race three straight years – 2012-14, something that had never been done before.

In 2012 and 2013, the couple won the event in a 1935 Ford coupe with a three speed manual transmission. Irene got tired of shifting all of the time, so in 2014 they participated and won in a 1966 Mustang. It is the only time in the nearly 40-year history of the Great Race that a post-war car has won. That year they also accomplished another first in Great Race history, a perfect score. On the first day of the event from Ogunquit, Maine, to Lowell, Mass., Irene and Barry posted a zero on all four legs of that day’s competition, which is called an “Ace.”

Irene was very shy and private, but you can tell on this video clip from that day that she was proud of their accomplishment:

We will post any arrangements as we learn them.

4 comments about “Three-Time Great Race Champion Irene Jason Passes Away”

  • So sorry to hear of Irene’s passing. She was such a kind and pleasant woman.
    I remember how helpful both her and Barry were the year we were rookies with helpful
    ideas of the in’s and out’s of rallying.
    Our Prayers are with the Family
    Tim & Marlene Mangan

  • My sincere condolences to the Jason family. I so enjoyed welcoming Irene and Barry to each finish line during their years of Great Racing! I particularly remember their perfect day! While all of us were witnessing what heretofore was thought to be impossible, Irene gracefully and humbly accepted the accolades of an adoring group of rally fans and Great Racers. To Barry, I wish you peace, comfort and loving memories. Irene was a wonderful friend who quietly lit up our lives.

  • Irene was a quiet, lovely lady who completely clobbered me as a driver. Not only did she win the Big Bird 3 times, as I recall she is the ONLY driver with a perfect day! Grace with pace, a true Texas lady. I also deeply appreciated her dedication to covering the race in prayer every day. In their rookie year in the shoebox Ford we offered some tips; boy, was that a mistake! Blessings and comfort to Barry and their family.

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